Persius’s Satires

Persius (34–62), translated by Kline, A. S. (contact-email)

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Aulus Persius Flaccus, born on 4 December 34 AD in Volterra and deceased on 24 November 62 AD, was a Roman satirist of Etruscan heritage. His oeuvre comprises six satires, edited and published posthumously by his Stoic mentor Lucius Annaeus Cornutus. Persius’s satires critique the moral and stylistic shortcomings of his contemporaries, adopting a Stoic perspective that contrasts with Horace’s more lenient approach. His works, marked by introspection, examine societal excess and moral lapses, underscoring his commitment to Stoicism. Despite their complexity, Persius’s satires are celebrated as a pinnacle of Roman satire, distinguished by their ethical seriousness. His influence persisted throughout the Middle Ages, attesting to his lasting contribution to satirical literature.

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Kline, A. S.

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